Computationally predicted IgE epitopes of walnut allergens contribute to cross-reactivity with peanuts.
ABSTRACT: Cross-reactivity between peanuts and tree nuts implies that similar immunoglobulin E (IgE) epitopes are present in their proteins.To determine whether walnut sequences similar to known peanut IgE-binding sequences, according to the property distance (PD) scale implemented in the Structural Database of Allergenic Proteins, react with IgE from sera of patients with allergy to walnut and/or peanut.? Patient sera were characterized by western blotting for IgE binding to nut protein extracts and to peptides from walnut and peanut allergens, similar to known peanut epitopes as defined by low PD values, synthesized on membranes. Competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was used to show that peanut and predicted walnut epitope sequences compete with purified Ara h 2 for binding to IgE in serum from a cross-reactive patient.Sequences from the vicilin walnut allergen Jug r 2, which had low PD values to epitopes of the peanut allergen Ara h 2, a 2S albumin, bound to IgE in sera from five patients who reacted to either walnut or peanut or both. A walnut epitope recognized by sera from six patients mapped to a surface-exposed region on a model of the N-terminal pro-region of Jug r 2. This predicted walnut epitope competed for IgE binding to Ara h 2 in serum as well as the known IgE epitope from Ara h 2.Sequences with low PD value (< 8.5) to known IgE epitopes could contribute to cross-reactivity between allergens. This further validates the PD scoring method for predicting cross-reactive epitopes in allergens.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The peanut allergens Ara h 2, h 6, and h 7 are potent allergens and can trigger severe reactions. Ara h 7 consists of three isoforms differing in their ability to induce basophil degranulation, whereas the ability of Ara h 7.0201 is comparable to Ara h 2 and 6 as shown in previous literature. OBJECTIVE:To identify linear epitopes of Ara h 7.0101, Ara h 7.0201 and Ara h 7.0301 recognized by IgE and IgG4 from patients sensitized to Ara h 7 and to investigate their potential to elucidate divergent abilities of the Ara h 7 isoforms in inducing basophil activation. METHODS:Linear epitopes recognized by IgE and IgG4 were mapped by peptide microarray analysis containing 15-mer peptides of Ara h 2.0201, 6, 7.0101, 7.0201 and 7.0301 and 39 peanut allergic patients sensitized to Ara h 7 (discovery). For validation, 20-mer peptides containing the minimal epitope and surrounding amino acids were incubated with 25 sensitized patients and 10 controls (validation). RESULTS:Three out of 14 linear epitopes were unique for each isoform (Ara h 7.0101: aa 97-109; Ara h 7.0201: aa 122-133; Ara h 7.0301: aa 65-74) but scarcely recognized by IgE. The main linear IgE epitope (aa 51-57) located in the long flexible loop of all Ara h 7 isoforms was bound by antibodies from 31% of the patients (discovery and validation cohort). Regarding IgG4, 55% of the patients recognized an epitope present on all isoforms (aa 55-65), whereas epitope aa 129-137, only present on Ara h 7.0101/0.0301, was recognized by 38% of the patients. Recognition was highly individual, although 20% of the patients recognized any linear epitope neither by IgE nor by IgG4 despite a low mean z-score of ? 1.7. Remarkably, only 50% of the patients recognized one or more epitopes by IgE. CONCLUSION & CLINICAL RELEVANCE:Ara h 7 isoforms share many linear epitopes being easily accessible for antibody binding. Unique epitopes, essential to elucidate divergent potencies, were scarcely recognized, suggesting a crucial involvement of conformational epitopes.
Project description:Allergic reactions to walnut can be life-threatening. Although IgE epitopes of walnut have been studied, CD4(+) T cell-specific epitopes for walnut remain uncharacterized. In particular, the relationship of both phenotype and frequency of walnut-specific T cells to the disease have not been examined.We sought to provide a thorough phenotypic analysis for walnut-reactive T cells in allergic and nonallergic subjects, particularly the relationship of phenotypes and frequencies of walnut-specific T cells with the disease.The CD154 upregulation assay was used to examine CD4(+) T-cell reactivity toward the walnut allergens Jug r 1, Jug r 2, and Jug r 3. A tetramer-guided epitope mapping approach was used to identify HLA-restricted CD4(+) T-cell epitopes in Jug r 2. Direct ex vivo staining with peptide-major histocompatibility complex class II tetramers enabled comparison of the frequency and phenotype of Jug r 2-specific CD4(+) T cells between allergic and nonallergic subjects. Jug r 2-specific T-cell clones were also generated, and mRNA transcription factor levels were assessed by using quantitative RT-PCR. Intracellular cytokine staining assays were performed for further phenotypic analyses.Jug r 2 was identified as the major allergen that elicited CD4(+) T-cell responses. Multiple Jug r 2 T-cell epitopes were identified. The majority of these T cells in allergic subjects have a CCR4(+) phenotype. A subset of these T cells express CCR4(+)CCR6(+) irrespective of the asthmatic status of the allergic subjects. Intracellular cytokine staining confirmed these TH2-, TH2/TH17-, and TH17-like heterogenic profiles. Jug r 2-specific T-cell clones from allergic subjects mainly expressed GATA3, nonetheless, a portion of T-cell clones both GATA3 and RAR-related orphan receptor C (RORC) or RORC alone, confirming the presence of TH2, TH2/TH17, and TH17 cells.Jug r 2-specific responses dominate walnut T-cell responses in patients with walnut allergy. Jug r 2 central memory CD4(+) cells and terminal effector T cells were detected in peripheral blood, with the central memory phenotype as the most prevalent phenotype. In addition to conventional TH2 cells, TH2/TH17 and TH17 cells were also detected in nonasthmatic and asthmatic patients with walnut allergy. Understanding this T-cell heterogeneity might render better understanding of the disease manifestation.
Project description:Cross-linking of IgE antibody by specific epitopes on the surface of mast cells is a prerequisite for triggering symptoms of peanut allergy. IgE epitopes are frequently categorized as linear or conformational epitopes. Although linear IgE-binding epitopes of peanut allergens have been defined, little is known about conformational IgE-binding epitopes.To identify clinically relevant conformational IgE epitopes of the two most important peanut allergens, Ara h 2 and Ara h 6, using phage peptide library.A phage 12mer peptide library was screened with allergen-specific IgE from 4 peanut-allergic patients. Binding of the mimotopes to IgE from a total of 29 peanut-allergic subjects was measured by ELISA. The mimotope sequences were mapped on the surface areas of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 using EpiSearch.Forty-one individual mimotopes were identified that specifically bind anti- Ara h 2/Ara h 6 IgE as well as rabbit anti-Ara h 2 and anti-Ara h 6 IgG. Sequence alignment showed that none of the mimotope sequences match a linear segment of the Ara h 2 or Ara h 6 sequences. EpiSearch analysis showed that all the mimotopes mapped to surface patches of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6. Eight of the mimotopes were recognized by more than 90% of the patients, suggesting immunodominance. Each patient had distinct IgE recognition patterns but the recognition frequency was not correlated to the concentration of peanut specific IgE or to clinical history.The mimotopes identified in this study represent conformational epitopes. Identification of similar surface patches on Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 further underscores the similarities between these two potent allergens.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Patients with peanut allergy have highly stable pathologic antibody repertoires to the immunodominant B-cell epitopes of the major peanut allergens Ara h 1 to 3.<h4>Objective</h4>We used a peptide microarray technique to analyze the effect of treatment with peanut oral immunotherapy (OIT) on such repertoires.<h4>Methods</h4>Measurements of total peanut-specific IgE (psIgE) and peanut-specific IgG(4) (psIgG(4)) were made with CAP-FEIA. We analyzed sera from 22 patients with OIT and 6 control subjects and measured serum specific IgE and IgG(4) binding to epitopes of Ara h 1 to 3 using a high-throughput peptide microarray technique. Antibody affinity was measured by using a competitive peptide microarray, as previously described.<h4>Results</h4>At baseline, psIgE and psIgG(4) diversity was similar between patients and control subjects, and there was broad variation in epitope recognition. After a median of 41 months of OIT, polyclonal psIgG(4) levels increased from a median of 0.3 ?g/mL (interquartile range [25% to 75%], 0.1-0.43 ?g/mL) at baseline to 10.5 ?g/mL (interquartile range [25% to 75%], 3.95-45.48 ?g/mL; P < .0001) and included de novo specificities. psIgE levels were reduced from a median baseline of 85.45 kU(A)/L (23.05-101.0 kU(A)/L) to 7.75 kU(A)/L (2.58-30.55 kU(A)/L, P < .0001). Affinity was unaffected. Although the psIgE repertoire contracted in most OIT-treated patients, several subjects generated new IgE specificities, even as the total psIgE level decreased. Global epitope-specific shifts from IgE to IgG(4) binding occurred, including at an informative epitope of Ara h 2.<h4>Conclusion</h4>OIT differentially alters Ara h 1 to 3 binding patterns. These changes are variable between patients, are not observed in control subjects, and include a progressive polyclonal increase in IgG(4) levels, with concurrent reduction in IgE amount and diversity.
Project description:Peanut allergy is a significant IgE-mediated health problem because of the increased prevalence, potential severity, and chronicity of the reaction. Following our characterization of the two peanut allergens Ara h 1 and Ara h 2, we have isolated a cDNA clone encoding a third peanut allergen, Ara h 3. The deduced amino acid sequence of Ara h 3 shows homology to 11S seed-storage proteins. The recombinant form of this protein was expressed in a bacterial system and was recognized by serum IgE from approximately 45% of our peanut-allergic patient population. Serum IgE from these patients and overlapping, synthetic peptides were used to map the linear, IgE-binding epitopes of Ara h 3. Four epitopes, between 10 and 15 amino acids in length, were found within the primary sequence, with no obvious sequence motif shared by the peptides. One epitope is recognized by all Ara h 3-allergic patients. Mutational analysis of the epitopes revealed that single amino acid changes within these peptides could lead to a reduction or loss of IgE binding. By determining which amino acids are critical for IgE binding, it might be possible to alter the Ara h 3 cDNA to encode a protein with a reduced IgE-binding capacity. These results will enable the design of improved diagnostic and therapeutic approaches for food-hypersensitivity reactions.
Project description:BACKGROUND:In Africa, peanuts are frequently consumed, but severe allergic reactions are rare. We investigated immunological patterns of clinical tolerance to peanut in peanut-sensitized but asymptomatic patients from central Africa compared to peanut-allergic and peanut-sensitized but asymptomatic patients from Sweden. METHODS:Sera from allergic patients (n = 54) from Zimbabwe sensitized to peanut but without allergic symptoms to peanut, and sera from peanut-allergic (n = 25) and peanut-sensitized but asymptomatic (n = 25) patients from Sweden were analyzed toward peanut allergen components (Ara h 1-3, 6, 8-9) and other allergen molecules from important allergen sources using microarray. IgE to Ara h 2 peptide epitopes was analyzed, and allergenic activity was assessed by basophil activation assay. RESULTS:Forty-six percent of the African and all peanut-allergic Swedish patients showed IgE toward one of the highly allergenic peanut allergens (Ara h 1-3, 6, 9). However, 48% of the African patients had IgE to cross-reactive carbohydrate determinants (CCDs) with low allergenic activity and 60% of the Swedish asymptomatic patients had IgE against the PR protein Ara h 8. IgG and IgG4 specificities and levels could not discriminate between the African asymptomatic and Swedish peanut-allergic patients. Asymptomatic patients almost lacked IgE to Ara h 2 peptides, which were recognized by peanut-allergic patients. Peanut IgE from peanut asymptomatic patients showed poor allergenic activity compared with IgE from peanut-allergic patients. CONCLUSIONS:Natural clinical tolerance to peanut in the African patients can be caused by IgE to low allergenic peanut components and by poor allergenic activity of peanut-specific IgE.
Project description:Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 are moderately homologous and highly potent peanut allergens.To identify IgE-binding linear epitopes of Ara h 6, compare them to those of Ara h 2, and to stratify binding based on clinical histories.Thirty highly peanut-allergic subjects were stratified by clinical history. Sera were diluted to contain the same amount of anti-peanut IgE. IgE binding to overlapping 20-mer peptides of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 was assessed using microarrays.Each subject had a unique IgE-binding fingerprint to peptides; these data were coalesced into epitope binding. IgE from subjects with a history of more severe reactions (n = 19) had a smaller frequency of binding events (BEs) for both Ara h 2 (52 BEs of 152 (19X8epitopes) possible BEs and Ara h 6 (13 BEs of 133 (19X7 epitopes) possible BEs) compared to IgE from those with milder histories (n = 11) (Ara h 2: 47 BEs of 88 (11X8 epitopes) possible BEs, P < 0.01; Ara h 6: 25 BEs of 77 (11X7 epitopes) possible BEs, P < 0.001). Using an unsupervised hierarchal cluster analysis, subjects with similar histories tended to cluster. We have tentatively identified a high-risk pattern of binding to peptides of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6, predominantly in subjects with a history of more severe reactions (OR = 12.6; 95% CI: 2.0-79.5; P < 0.01).IgE from patients with more severe clinical histories recognize fewer linear epitopes of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 than do subjects with milder reactions and bind these epitopes in characteristic patterns. Close examination of IgE binding to epitopes of Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 may have prognostic value.
Project description:Protein allergens can be related by cross-reactivity. Allergens that share relevant sequence can cross-react, those lacking sufficient similarity in their IgE antibody-binding epitopes do not cross-react. Cross-reactivity is based on shared epitopes that is based on shared sequence and higher level structure (charge and shape). Epitopes are important in predicting cross-reactivity potential and may provide the potential to establish criteria that identify homology among allergens. Selected allergen's IgE-binding epitope sequences were used to determine how the FASTA algorithm could be used to identify a threshold of significance. A statistical measure (expectation value, E-value) was used to identify a threshold specific to identifying cross-reactivity potential. Peanut Ara h 1 and Ara h 2, shrimp tropomyosin Pen a 1, and birch tree pollen allergen, Bet v 1 were sources of known epitopes. Each epitope or set of epitopes was inserted into random amino acid sequence to create hypothetical proteins used as queries to an allergen database. Alignments with allergens were noted for the ability to match the epitope's source allergen as well as any cross-reactive or other homologous allergens. A FASTA expectation value range (1 × 10-5 -1 × 10-6 ) was identified that could act as a threshold to help identify cross-reactivity potential.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Peanut allergy affects 1% of the population and causes the most fatal food-related anaphylactic reactions. The protein Ara h 2 is the most potent peanut allergen recognized by 80-90% of peanut allergic patients. METHODS:The crystal structure of the major peanut allergen Ara h 2 was determined for the first time at 2.7 Å resolution using a customized maltose-binding protein (MBP)-fusion system. IgE antibody binding to the MBP fusion construct vs the natural allergen was compared by ELISA using sera from peanut allergic patients. RESULTS:The structure of Ara h 2 is a five-helix bundle held together by four disulfide bonds and related to the prolamin protein superfamily. The fold is most similar to other amylase and trypsin inhibitors. The MBP--Ara h 2 fusion construct was positively recognized by IgE from 76% of allergic patients (25/33). Two populations of patients could be identified. Subpopulation 1 (n = 14) showed an excellent correlation of IgE antibody binding to natural vs recombinant Ara h 2. Subpopulation 2 (n = 15) showed significantly reduced IgE binding to the MBP fusion protein. Interestingly, about 20% of the IgE binding in subpopulation 2 could be recovered by increasing the distance between MBP and Ara h 2 in a second construct. DISCUSSION:The reduced IgE binding to the MBP--Ara h 2 of subpopulation 2 indicates that the MBP molecule protects an immunodominant epitope region near the first helix of Ara h 2. Residues involved in the epitope(s) are suggested by the crystal structure. The MBP--Ara h 2 fusion constructs will be useful to further elucidate the relevance of certain epitopes to peanut allergy.
Project description:BACKGROUND:2S-albumins Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 are the most potent peanut allergens and levels of specific immunoglobulin E (IgE) towards these proteins are good predictors of clinical reactivity. Because of structural homologies, Ara h 6 is generally considered to cross-react extensively with Ara h 2. OBJECTIVE:We aimed to quantify the IgE cross-reactivity between Ara h 2 and Ara h 6. METHODS:Peanut 2S-albumins were purified from raw peanuts. The IgE cross-reactivity between Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 was evaluated with 32 sera from French and US peanut-allergic patients by measuring the residual IgE-binding to one 2S-albumin after depletion of IgE antibodies recognizing the other 2S-albumin. The IgE cross-reactivity between Ara h 2 and Ara h 6 was further investigated by competitive inhibition of IgE-binding and by a model of mast cell degranulation. RESULTS:A highly variable level of IgE cross-reactivity was revealed among the patients. The mean fraction of cross-reactive IgE antibodies represented only 17.1% of 2S-albumins-specific IgE antibodies and was lower than the mean fraction of IgE specific to Ara h 2 (57.4%) or to Ara h 6 (25.5%). The higher level of Ara h 2-specific IgE was principally due to the IgE-binding capacity of an insertion containing the repeated immunodominant linear epitope DPYSPOH S. The impact of IgE cross-reactivity on diagnostic testing was illustrated with a serum displaying an Ara h 6-specific IgE response of 26 UI/mL that was not associated with the capacity of Ara h 6 to trigger mast cell degranulation. CONCLUSIONS & CLINICAL RELEVANCE:Immunoglobulin E antibodies specific to peanut 2S-albumins are mainly non-cross-reactive, but low-affinity cross-reactivity can affect diagnostic accuracy. Testing IgE-binding to a mixture of 2S-albumins rather than to each separately may enhance diagnostic performance.